Posts Tagged ‘ballet’

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Gunpowder Plot, Carola Dunn
Daisy Dalrymple Fletcher travels to a country estate to write about its Guy Fawkes celebration, but the festivities are interrupted by murder. Of course, her husband Alec is called in to investigate. I liked the family dynamics in this one.

Rising Strong, Brené Brown
Brown, a social worker and vulnerability researcher, writes about recovering from falls and failure: delving into our emotions and stories, and being honest with ourselves about them. Some great lines, but overall I was a little underwhelmed. Still thought-provoking, though.

Murder at Beechwood, Alyssa Maxwell
Newport society reporter and Vanderbilt cousin Emma Cross finds a baby boy on her doorstep. As she tries to find the baby’s mother, she also ends up investigating several murders. I really like Emma and the Newport setting; curious to see where Maxwell takes the series after this.

Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina, Misty Copeland
I saw Copeland dance in On the Town during my recent NYC trip and was blown away. I enjoyed her memoir of discovering ballet at age 13 and building a whole new life for herself. A little gushy at times, but an inspiring story.

The Idle Traveller, Dan Kieran
Kieran is a proponent of “slow travel”: taking your time to arrive at a destination, embracing disaster and being willing to wander. This book dragged a bit in the middle, but was still a charming account of his philosophy. Found at the Strand.

Young Elizabeth: The Making of the Queen, Kate Williams
A well-known yet enigmatic figure, Queen Elizabeth II was something of an accidental ruler. Williams explores the Queen’s childhood, her experiences in World War II and the turbulent family politics that set the stage for her reign. Quite readable, and fascinating. To review for Shelf Awareness (out Nov. 15).

Miss Buncle’s Book, D.E. Stevenson
Desperate for some extra money, Barbara Buncle writes a novel under a pen name – all about her fellow villagers and their escapades. The book is a runaway bestseller, but Barbara is terrified of what will happen if she’s found out. Another joyous, charming English novel from D.E. Stevenson. Found at Book Culture.

Most links (not affiliate links) are to my favorite local bookstore, Brookline Booksmith.

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January reading roundup #2

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For All of Us, One Today: An Inaugural Poet’s Journey, Richard Blanco
I love Blanco’s inaugural poem, “One Today,” and I was surprised and moved to hear him read his poem “Boston Strong” at Fenway Park this summer. This slim memoir traces both Blanco’s career as a poet and the process of writing the inaugural poem. Lyrical and lovely.

Dancing Through It: My Life in the Ballet, Jenifer Ringer
Ringer, a principal dancer with the New York City Ballet, chronicles her years in the highly competitive world of professional dance. She is honest about both her eating disorders and the Christian faith that helped her conquer them. The writing sometimes lacks polish, but her voice is warm and engaging. To review for Shelf Awareness (out Feb. 20).

One Good Deed: 365 Days of Trying to Be Just a Little Bit Better, Erin McHugh
On her birthday, McHugh resolves to do one good deed every day for a whole year. The deeds take many forms – giving money to the needy, promoting a friend’s work, being kind to grumpy customers or simply keeping her mouth shut. She writes about them with humor, wit and an earthy grace.

Dear Mr. Knightley, Katherine Reay
Orphan Samantha Moore has always taken refuge in her favorite books, but struggles to form relationships with people. When a mysterious benefactor (“Mr. Knightley”) offers her a full scholarship to journalism school, Sam pours out her heart in a series of letters to him. A heartbreaking, charming, modern twist on Daddy-Long-Legs, and a wonderful story of redemption.

The Rosie Project, Graeme Simsion
Don Tillman, brilliant but socially inept genetics researcher, develops an exacting questionnaire to help him find the perfect wife. Rosie, a whip-smart, fiery redhead who fails nearly all Don’s criteria, bursts into his life and upsets it utterly. A fast, funny, smart love story. Recommended by Anne.

Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking: A Memoir of Food and Longing, Anya von Bremzen
Anya von Bremzen, food writer and Soviet émigré, explores her country’s chaotic history as she and her mother cook their way through essential Soviet dishes of the 20th century. The history lessons dragged at times, but this was a fascinating and very different take on the food memoir trend.

I’ve been reading up a storm lately, so look for another reading roundup on Friday.

Links (not affiliate links) are to my favorite local bookstore, Brookline Booksmith.

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